Saturday, June 18, 2016

Baker's Corner: Cinnamon Apple Roses

So I believe these apple roses are a thing right now? Since the past few months, they have been popping up relentlessly on my Facebook wall, on Instagram, Pinterest and circulating in Whatsapp videos. The internet has been exploding with them. It was hard for me not to get sucked in and so here I am, finally joining the brigade!  

For the uninitiated, these are delicate rose-shaped pastries made with soft and delicious apple slices perfumed with cinnamon, wrapped in sweet, buttery and crispy puff pastry. Sounds amazing right? It is really not hard to understand the appeal of these bite-sized beauties 

Besides, I for one am game for anything with apples in them!

Before it comes to your attention, let me concede that my apple roses are FAR FAR from perfect. To get great looking roses, the apple slices have to be pretty thin. I don't have a mandoline (don't plan on owning one in the future) so I sliced the apples by hand. This may not sound like such a big deal but it kinda is. For this, you need to have a razor sharp knife and a patience reservoir full to the brim. Unfortunately for me, both were lacking on that particular day (bummer huh?). As I was assembling the roses, I realized that I didn't do a good job and the apple slices were thicker than desired. I almost didn't end up blogging this recipe but changed my mind when I tasted the pastries because taste-wise, the thickness didn't matter at all and they still tasted pretty darn good!

The apple roses in the original recipe that I followed looked gorgeous (even though the author called them 'ugly apple roses'). Mine could easily earn a place in the ugly category! Anyway, I'm not too much into long as my culinary creations taste nice, I'm content with it. 

Even though these apple roses look fancy and complicated, in reality, they are not. You need about six basic ingredients and about 1 hour of your time. That's it! Oh yeah and patience helps a great deal (look who's talking right?!)  *grins sheepishly*. Depending on your affinity to cinnamon, you can add as much of it as you like or skip it entirely. To me, the apple-cinnamon combination is a match made in culinary heaven so my version has incorporated it. But to each his own....

These beautiful and gourmet individual apple pastries can be made ahead of time and are perfect for entertaining. You would definitely wow your guests with these! 

Don't be intimidated by this recipe okay? I had so many things going against me that day (muggy weather, not-so-sharp knife, lack of patience, lack of time and distractions galore) but still I managed to produce decent-ish apple roses (which tasted much better than they looked may I emphasize). If I could pull it off, then anyone can! 

Give it a go, do an infinitely better job than me and prepare to dazzle!

Saturday, June 11, 2016

Recipe of the month: Vegetarian Beehoon - A guest post for like a lavendeR

Did you see my last guest post on Pineapple Tarts? If you didn't, please go and check it out otherwise you may seem a bit lost with this post. What's that? You already did? are marvellous then! 

Jokes apart, I volunteered to do a two-part guest post for fellow blogger Reshma who blogs at 'like a lavendeR'. This offer was made to ease her burden of blogging while she is in the midst of relocating from Germany to India with her family. For anyone who has gone through the hassle of a big know what that's like, don't you? 

Since I live in Singapore, I thought that it would be a good idea to contribute dishes with a local flavour. And I wanted to be diverse so I selected a sweet and a savoury local dish. For today's guest post I have for you Vegetarian Beehoon, a savoury dish made with rice vermicelli. 

Beehoon is a humble local dish (Singapore and Malaysia) particularly popular during breakfast hours. Commonly referred to as ‘Economical Beehoon’, this dish can be truly economical with a few simple toppings like cabbage and egg, or it can be made quite luxurious with an assortment of gourmet ingredients. This is a simple, fuss-free and hearty dish that can be customized easily to one's palette. It represents comfort food in this part of the world.

Beehoon was my first tryst with local cuisine way back in 2008 so it will always hold a special place in my heart. My version is not authentic but it is the result of a lot of culinary experimentation that led to what I genuinely believe is a winning recipe (I'm so modest no?!). 

So without rambling further, here is a wonderful dish that you can prepare in the comfort of your home and feel like you have been transported to a hawker centre in Singapore! A satisfied tummy and teleportation at the same that sounds like a neat deal to me! If you agree, head on over to Reshma's space to check out the recipe with step-by-step pictures. 

Once again, thanks a bunch Reshma, for this opportunity. Here's wishing you and your family all the best and I look forward to more of your food, travel adventures and decor projects back on home turf.

Till next time!


Saturday, June 4, 2016

Restaurant review: Fatboy's The Burger Bar @ Holland Village, Singapore

Fatboy's The Burger Bar is a casual burger joint in Singapore that serves burgers, fries, sandwiches, hotdogs, beers, milkshakes and floats.

"Re-think your burger" is what inspired Singaporean brothers, Kennie and Bernie Tay to bring to Upper Thomson what they felt had been lacking in the comfort food market - a good old handmade and tasty hamburger. Since its flagship restaurant (located on Upper Thomson road) opened its doors to the Singapore public in 2009, Fatboy's has grown in leaps and bounds, running multiple outlets in Singapore, Malaysia and China. More outlets in Asia are said to be in the pipeline.

I was meeting my girlfriends after a really long time and after having stayed away from the dining scene for so long, I left them with the decision to choose the dinner venue. When the name Fatboy's came up in our discussion, I was interested since I wasn't aware of its existence until then (I was living under the proverbial rock!). We opted for the outlet at Holland Village since that was a convenient location for everyone. Despite it being a weekday, we decided to make a reservation since we were a large group.

When it comes to the interiors, nothing is as eye-catching as a black and white colour palette. This colour scheme lends itself to both vintage and contemporary interpretations, and makes a bold statement. The red accents that you see here and there adds bright pops of color. I'm not sure why the fat bald mascot is made to look so grumpy though! 😆

You can immediately tell that the look of the restaurant is inspired by a retro American diner. It has a subtle rock 'n' roll vibe going on.

The medium-sized restaurant has a mix of old school benches and modern high tables to complete it's casual look.

The menu at Fatboy's is detailed and extensive so I suggest you take your time and give it a thorough inspection.

The best part about this restaurant's menu is that it features a build-your-own-burger section where you can choose how you want your burger. You can choose from a wide array of toppings, sauces, buns, & patties to create your very own gourmet burger. Apparently, with 25 toppings, 11 sauces, 4 types of buns and patties to experiment with, you can claim one of 4400 possible permutations.

Now that is something!